Let’s talk about director Roland Emmerich.
He certainly knows how to do spectacle. Whether it’s Will Smith saving us from aliens (INDEPENDENCE DAY), a modern ice age (THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW), or a planet facing multiple catastrophes (2012), Emmerich makes films that look and feel big.
Every few years, he gives us a new bombastic treat, and this time around, in MOONFALL, it’s the moon that’s about to crash into Earth. Based on the trailers, it looks like he has squeezed every penny out of the production $140M budget.
The problem is that the first trailer released on September 2nd (the first grey bar) failed to produce much heat. As you can see below, it resulted in no noticeable gain in awareness. It’s certainly alarming when a $140M film has awareness under 15% after a trailer.
Thankfully Lionsgate gave us a second trailer rather quickly last week. Now, a week later, the film is starting to show signs of life. Awareness has finally reached 20%. Still, that’s nothing to write home about. Awareness for a movie of this size should be well above 30 at this point.
In addition to faint signs of life on the awareness side, interest has also started to climb. As the chart below shows, interest has risen to a best-yet 5.3. That’s not a terrible number. Whereas MOONFALL ranks 41st in awareness among all films being tracked by The Quorum, it ranks 27th in interest. That’s still not great, but the film is digging out of a deep hole, and it has to take its wins where it can.
MOONFALL, which opens on February 4th, is still three months away from release. It is nowhere close to the 30-day home stretch. And Lionsgate’s aggressiveness in releasing material should be commended. The problem is that despite these efforts — and the new signs of life — MOONFALL still has lots of ground to make up.